View Full Version : Flight-friendly toys?

08-02-2002, 08:55 AM
I am about to embark on a 4-hr flight with my 20 month-old and thought I'd ask for suggestions about flight-friendly toys. He will have his own seat. I'm just trying to make this the least painful experience for him, me and the other passengers!

Anyone have definite must-haves or don'ts?

Alan and Denise Fields
08-02-2002, 03:27 PM

Thanks for using our message boards. Hate to make this suggestion but it works so well for our kids, we just have to pass this along. We rent a DVD player for long flights to Hawaii or the East Coast. The company is called Inmotion Pictures (www.inmotionpictures.com) and is located in many major airports. For $15 per day you get the DVD player and a choice of DVDs. If your destination has an Inmotion Pictures kiosk in it's airport, you just drop off the DVD player; otherwise you can keep it for the whole trip then return it to the kiosk in your home airport. It is amazing and much cheaper than buying a DVD player.

best wishes,

alan and denise fields

09-01-2002, 09:29 AM
Short report on the trip and what we took, what worked and what didn't:

What we took: No DVD rentals at either airport, so that was a bust (too bad!). I took several lift-the-flap books, a pair of "busy books" I bought from Lillian Vernon, a puppet, a small Magna Doodle board, regular crayons and paper, and the Color Wonder markers and paper from Crayola. Everything was new--he hadn't seen any of it before (thought that might help with the fascination factor).

What worked: Color Wonder!!! It was the only thing he wanted to do the whole flight. I got a little frustrated trying to keep track of the 6 markers and their associated caps, so I'd appreciate any suggestions on keeping track of them, but he LOVED coloring. I'd count on using a whole refill each way for a trip that long. Hey, it's worth $6 each way to keep them quiet and entertained. The only drawback to coloring is that with a carseat, he couldn't use the tray table and had to draw in his lap. He got a little frustrated with that.

What didn't: Everything else! He had no interest in the books, napping (even after a little therapeutic Benadryl and flying at naptime), the puppet, the busy books--nothing. Our plane didn't even have in-flight phones, something a friend had recommended as an interesting new toy (OK, so the airline probably wouldn't like him playing with their expensive phones. . . but if it keeps him quiet and I can keep him from completely destroying it. . . I was willing).

Bottom line: Save yourself the backache of carting along 75 things in your already stuffed diaperbag and go with LOTS of snacks and a Color Wonder set.

Good luck!

03-18-2003, 02:12 AM
We have to pass on the tip we got from a friend--use your video camera to show movies on the 1 1/2 inch screen.

We had a 12 hour flight to Asia with our 15 month old to visit family and thought about renting or buying a DVD player. The cost of buying was pretty high and the battery life is not that good on the DVD players. Our friend pointed out that we own a video camera that we would be taking on the trip already, and we have 2 batteries and a charger. It was easy to make a copy of some videos (for personal use only, so allowed)onto one of the videotapes, and then to play them over and over. Our son didn't mind the small screen and tinny sound, and enjoyed his regular videos in between games and other books(and occasional meltdowns).

We then used the camera for the trip, and popped the recorded tape back in for the return. We have since used this successfully on some other, fortunately shorter, flights. No need to buy or rent any more gear to lug around.

02-10-2004, 09:36 PM
Living in Japan and flying home to see family we've gotten a lot of experience with long flights. Here is what works for us:

- Laptop with DVD's, as a previous poster pointed out an actual
DVD player won't work as they only last 2 hrs into a 15 hr trip
- Magnadoodle, we like that the pen is attached!
- Crayons and the 'barf bag', I know, it sounds disgusting, but
where else do they provide a ready made puppet for free?
- New books, I use the cheap 'floppy' books that are weigh less

I completely agree that overseas carriers are a lot more kid friendly (we particularly like JAL which keeps us supplied with warm wash cloths throughout the trip). Also I have found that links (those little plastic interconnecting rings) are handy both for keeping the toys within reach and as entertainment in themselves.

Jen in Okinawa
Mom to Noelle (10/25/01)

02-17-2004, 04:05 PM
Magna Doodle!!! They sell multiple sizes. I suggest the one that is about 8" or 9" across and the pen can be stored in the top of the frame. Beth got her first one at about 14mo for a long (9hr) car trip and played with it for over an HOUR non stop!!

Small snacks a board book or two and at that age, Beth loved to take a few Little People and a plastic cup...put them in, take them out, put them in, take them out...you get the idea :-).



02-18-2004, 11:15 AM
Magnadoole was a huge hit. He also like playing with the headphones on the plane. He actually liked these better than any of his books or other toys. We also brought some board books and the ones that have the buttons. I had to put masking tape over the speakers of those books so they were not so loud. We also bought along a DVD player as well.

Mom of Cade 6/16/02